ePURE ‘heartened’ by MEPs’ views on biofuels

Thursday, July 06, 2017

The renewable ethanol association ePURE has responded to Hans-Olaf Henkel and Marijana Petir, two MEPs in the European Parliament who recently stressed the importance of biofuels in the decarbonisation of the EU’s transport sector.

In a recent article in The Parliamentarian, Petir and Henkel discussed the future of the EU’s energy sector and the promotion of renewable resources. In that interview, Henkel described biofuels as “indispensable” for the transitional phase of the decarbonisation of the transport sector.

Petir meanwhile, addressed the European Commission’s proposed changes to the Renewable Energy Directive, dubbed RED II, which would see a gradual phase out of crop based biofuels such as ethanol from the fuel mix.

"I believe that the level of production of conventional biofuels should remain at seven per cent of final gross energy consumption in the transport sector at European level without phasing down to 3.8 per cent by 2030, as proposed by the Commission,” she told The Parliamentarian.

Emmanuel Desplechin, secretary general of ePURE, has responded positively to the arguments made by the two MEPs.

“It is heartening that so many Members of the European Parliament agree the EU needs to set higher ambitions when it comes to renewables – especially when the EU is trying to step up its global leadership role on the issue of climate change,” he told Biofuels International. “Achieving the EU’s increasingly important Paris goals and reintroducing binding national targets will require contributions from all renewable energy sources with proven GHG savings and sustainability. That includes renewable ethanol – whether from so-called ‘conventional’ or ‘advanced’ technologies.

“What matters is what delivers GHG savings, and European ethanol does that -- an average of more than 66% over fossil petrol. It makes no sense for the EU to follow the European Commission’s RED II proposal and phase out biofuels like ethanol that are doing the job of decarbonising transport. That would remove a key tool of EU decarbonisation and discourage investment in new technology. We hope all MEPs will support this view when it comes time to vote.”